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CNN Saturday Morning

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TOPIC FREQUENCY

Us 15, Jeff Bush 14, Florida 8, Cnn 6, Alabama 5, Post Shredded Wheat 4, Josh Gant 3, Vatican 3, Brianna 3, Cardinals 3, Selma 3, New York 3, Randall 2, Josh 2, Susan Candiotti 2, Subaru 2, Excavator 2, Randall Orndorff 2, Victor Blackwell 2, Beck 2,
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  CNN    CNN Saturday Morning    News  News/Business. News,  
   sports, weather and entertainment news.  

    March 3, 2013
    5:00 - 6:00am PST  

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general one face comes to mind, the face behind we c. everett koop. he died this week at the age of 86. the beard, bowtie, signature style was the same, whether denouncing tobacco or pitching life alert without leaving office. dr. everett koop really was a surgeon. in fact, he established the country's first neo-natal icu in philadelphia. but he carved out his place in history back in 1986 when he sent this pamplet on aids to all 107 million households. some of the issues involved in this brochure you may not be used to discussing openly, he wrote. but now you must discuss them. the reagan administration had been accused of being slow to
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recognize the epidemic. when he joined the fight he pulled no punches. >> his bully approach to great killers in this world, tobacco and hiv, i believe he's responsible for saving many, many lives. >> you can't ask more of a doctor than that. dr. koop was the first surgeon general to officially warn about the dangers of passive smoking. he was a vigorous opponent of big tobacco as you probably know. something i always like to tell people who want to quit smoking. you don't have to wait years to see the benefits. take a look. just 20 minutes after your last cigarette, your heart rate and blood pressure will drop. in 24 hours, your heart disease risk goes down. two weeks later your lung function improves. after five years your cancer risk declines. in fact, in 20 years, your overall risk is the same as a nonsmoker. tools or tricks to help you kick the habit, go to smokefree.gov.
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that will wrap things up here, time to send it back to atlanta for your top stories right now. the mission has changed because we can no longer sustain the rescue effort. >> the florida sinkhole that swallowed up one life is threatening a neighborhood. wait until you see what authorities are doing to the houses just minutes from now. it's the first sunday without a pope. now the cardinals are descending on the vatican to lec the next holy father. accused murderer jodi arias expected on the stand last monday. last week's display of sobs and cries may have swayed the jury but our body language expert said it was all an act. >> good morning, everyone.
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i'm brianna keilar in for randi kaye. it's march 3rd. we're glad you're with us. happening outside, demolition crews about to tear down a house sitting on a killer sinkhole, it's about 50 feet deep and 30 feet wide. the ground is so unstable, wrecking crews will have to demolish from a distance. they won't take their equipment past the sidewalk. it has become so dangerous search crews have been forced to give up the search for jeff bush's body. he was in his bed when the hole opened up and collapsed beneath him. there's fears it could spread to neighboring houses. at least two families left. we'll take you to the ground outside the house in a few minutes. most of the people chased out by a brush fire in daytona beach are back home this morning. firefighters there say they have it about 75% contained. at one appoint about 300 families had to leave and leave quick because the fire was moving so fast. winds and low humidity have been
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feeding the fire, those are the same conditions that are expected today. the crew aboard international space station is getting ready to lock down the dragon cargo vehicle. you can see it there. they use the station's robotic arm to reach out and grand prix early this morning. they will dock around 9:30 eastern. we'll be looking at that obviously. you may recall there were glitches when the dragon launched. that's why it's been delayed. this is an unmanned capsule, caring 1200 pounds of supplies for the station crew and their experiments so they are certainly anxious thinkstious to get it. to washington, lawmakers expected back this week. they have some unfinished business to handle. dealing with those forced spending cuts in effect isn't the only big thing on their plate. cnn's congressional correspondent dana bash with more. >> reporter: the house speaker walked out of an unproductive meeting about spending cuts
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going on now and instead focused on the next looming crisis. the end of this month march 27th funding for the government runs out. >> i'm hopeful we won't have to deal with the threat of a government shutdown while we're dealing with the sequester at the same time. the house will act next week and i hope the senate will follow suit. >> reporter: john boehner and house republicans plan to pass a bill next week to keep the government funded through september 30th, the end of the fiscal year. along with that deal with some of the pain with forced cuts going into effect now, just the military giving leeway in its new budget. >> it is going to help update the categories which will reduce some of the damage. >> but that does not necessarily mean crisis averted. why? congressional democrats are skeptical about helping the military and not other americans hit by spending cuts like children in head start programs. >> we need to have programs in
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there that meet compelling human need, housing, education, health care. we also need transportation. >> senator who heads it at work while most colleagues are home this weekend expressed frustration congress is gone. >> i'm here, ready to go. i'm waiting for the photo opp at the white house to come here and give me direction. >> they tried to put faces on forced spending cuts. >> now that congress has left, someone is going to be vacuuming and cleaning those floors and throwing out the garbage. they are going to have less pay. the janitors, security guards, they just got a pay cut and they have got to figure out how to manage it. >> we checked on that. it turns out the president was not exactly right. the senate sergeant-at-arms told cnn neither capitol police nor janitors will see salaries
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slashed only limited overtime. the only announced effect so far at the capital is some entrances will close. a small inconvenience to lawmakers and their aides. when it comes to a shutdown at the end of the month, the president was optimistic this was not going to happen. i'm told senate democrats took that as a signal they should find a way to bridge real differences with house republicans on budget priorities. dana bash, cnn, capitol hill. >> we wan to take you for selma, alabama where the issue of voting rights is taking stage again. forty years after the march for voting rights vice president joe biden heads there to commemorate the historic march and draw attention to the case before the supreme court. so let's catch up with victor blackwell. he's there in selma. victor, i understand you spoke with one of the attorneys who argued this case before the supreme court. what did he have to say?
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>> i did. special counsel to the naacp legal defense fund. he was arguing alongside the u.s. solicitor general. he will say what we're expecting the vice president to talk about today during a keynote address at a brunch before he crosses the edmund pettus bridge that the voting rights of 1965 should be continued as it's been reauthorized without being dismantled as the county in alabama is trying to take out one part of it. they are trying to have the supreme court overturn section 5 of the voting rights act, which gives the federal government the opportunity to negate or overturn elements of voting laws in certain states. alabama is one of them. here is what he said about a comment made by justice scalia calling that section racial entitlement. >> from the perspective of a civil rights lawyer and
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american, it completely denies our history. the voting rights act is a remedy for more than a century of persist endiscrimination. it's discrimination that stood in the face of the constitution. it's an answer to promises that went unkept for over 100 years. voting rights captures what's bess in america, the idea we should all be able to participate in democracy. >> the argument from that attorney from sheldon county, alabama was that the discrimination of the '60s, that was supposed to be overturned by the voting rights act, those problems have been solved. the vice president said a few days at a brunch at his home, the naval observatory in d.c., he was unaware that we would have to refight so many fights, this being one of them. brianna. >> i wonder what that lawyer thinks about the expectation for how the court may vote. when you listen to the oral arguments, any way you cut it,
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victor, we're expecting this to be a 5-4 decision. voting rights advocates are hanging hopes on justice anthony kennedy. he said some things they may find alarming indicating he may ultimately side against them. did this lawyer have a sense of how he thought the court may go? >> i think the comment specifically when kennedy asked do people in the south face a higher level of discrimination, african-americans, than people matt north. this attorney said the problem here is that this is institutionalized in some of these states. all aren't in the south. there are districts in other parts of the country. he believes that ultimately the voting rights act will be upheld. it was just reauthorized in 2006 by a vote of 98-0 in the senate to continue to 2031. again, this attorney believes when this is done, when the opinion comes from the court, the majority will be to uphold that reauthorization. >> what about the critics who
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argue, victor, that the provision isn't needed anymore because race relations have improved? obviously they are hoping the opposite. >> that is one element. i read portions of this 93-page brief that was filed with the court on behalf of shelby county. another thing they said this is a high cost of federalism. they say this is giving the federal government too much oversight over these states, one of them alabama, mississippi another, other states in the south. they say those two elements primarily are the reason this should not be upheld. another element is that in 2006 when this was reauthorized, congress did not offer any type of measurement, any barometer on which they would measure if there were still the levels of discrimination and how to measure -- needs to be reauthorized moving forward. >> this is going to be a very important case to watch. victor blackwell, we'll be checking in with you throughout the day in selma.
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thank you for that report. if you waking up with us today, this is a momentous day at the vatican, there is no pope. there is no sunday public mass being held by the pontiff. instead you have cardinals returning to the vatican for what will be one of the world's most secret meetings. their mission find a successor to pope benedict xvi who resigned last week. the next pope will lead the world's 1.2 billion roman catholics. cnn national correspondent susan candiotti is outside new york city's famed st. patrick's cathedral. what are you hearing from people there, susan? >> certainly there's a lot of anticipation this morning from outside here at st. patrick's. arguably the most famous catholic church in the united states. as everyone is waiting to see when the selection process will begin. of course, one of the 115 cardinals who will be part of that selection process is the head of the archdiocese in new
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york, cardinal timothy dolan. we talked to a few people as they were going into mass about what changes they would like to see in the catholic church. one man told us he thinks it will be a good idea to allow priests to marry. >> i think it's difficult for them not to be. i think the population is getting old. i think if they were allowed to live a slightly more normal lifestyle it would be better. >> what about female ordained priests. >> i think that would be a great thing. >> why is that? >> i think that would lead to a greater population of really talented priests of. >> another man told us he's very concerned about the ongoing scandal that is rocking the catholic church involving sexual abuse being committed by pleases and what to do about that. here is how he addressed that in terms of how the next pope will be selected. listen. >> the report that benedict
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requested to be prepared on various allegations and reported scandals is a report that he has chosen to make available to his successor but not to the voting cardinal electors, which to me is a bit of a disappointment. i think people empowered to vote and make a decision in choosing the next leader should have all available information. >> so two very thoughtful questions and answers from some catholics attending mass this day. brianna. >> susan candiotti in new york. thank you for that report. now searchers outside of tampa have given up on finding a man who disappeared when a sinkhole opened under his bed. now wrecking crews begin a very careful demolition of the house and jackie callaway from our affiliate wfts tv is there. jackie, what can you tell us?
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>>. [ inaudible ] >> we're having an auto problem with jackie with our affiliate wfts. she's our eyes on the ground so we'll be back to her moemt earl. back to the pope. the pope is not like running for president. it's unusual to see a campaign for cardinal. it's tabu. not only that, it could hurt your chances of getting elected. we'll talk about it. ♪ [ construction sounds ] ♪ [ watch ticking ] [ engine revs ] come in. ♪ got the coffee. that was fast. we're outta here. ♪ [ engine revs ] ♪
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today is the first sunday without a pope and the vatican could be popeless for a while longer. some cardinals who were supposed to vote aren't even in the vatican yet. look at this. it seems some people are campaigning for their favorite cardinal. posters around rome are urging cardinals to vote for peter turkson, from ghana. if elected he would be the first black pope.
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these posters could cause him problem. joining me in new york, father beck, a cnn contributor, host of sunday mass. father, when you are a potential candidate for pope, this isn't exactly like running for senior class president. it's a big tabu to campaign. even if he's not involved, do you think this could hurt turkson's chances? >> we've all heard the famous adage, the cardinal that goes in a pope comes out a cardinal. that isn't always true since paul vi was a front-runner as was pope benedict. they both went in and it was expected they would become pope and they did. however, it is tab yours to campaign for one's self. he gave an interview to telegraph in the uk and speculated on a question from the journalist, what would it be like. he said it would change my life. it would be hard. people didn't like the fact he speculated about it. nothing to do with the posters. some of the controversy around
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it could hurt him. >> the interview, that's interesting, more than the posters would hurt him. are there other no nos for someone who might be next pope. >> cardinals try not to go on the record with any statement about faith or morals that seem to contradict or too far left because those come back to haunt them. they should stay away from economy communities controversial. >> tomorrow, father, cardinals are supposed to start meeting. ultimately they have to set a date for the conclave. do we have a sense of when that will happen? >> the general conclave begins tomorrow. it's expected they will last about a week. at least that's common wisdom, which would put conclave beginning a week from monday on the 11th. we'll see. that means that a pope could be elected and maybe we have the
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installation mass by the 17th of march, which would be good, because the following sunday is palm sunday. i don't think you would want to have the installation for the pope on palm sunday for holy week so they are hoping to have it done by the 17th. >> that would be a little strange. give us a sense of the color of this process. there is a lot. there's a lot of ritual. one of the things we all know because it wasn't that long ago was the smoke that comes out of the vatican. it changes black to white. this is interesting because it's not always reliable you say. >> not only reliable but hasn't always been the case. the first time that ballots were burned was opinion 17, it wasn't until 1914 that smoke was indicator. used to be bells would ring and cannons would sound and that would indicate a pope was elected.
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we can't always tell what color it is. look gray, use black cartridges and they forget to put it in. it hasn't been a reliable indicator. >> it's so important. you hope they get it right because there's goes to be so many eyes, whether it's the faithful or tourists or journalists covering this trained on that smoke waiting to see. really appreciate it, father beck, thanks for being with us. >> my pleasure. thank you. >> if you're going to get stuck in an elevator, might as well get stuck with these guys. up next, cast of modern family has a not so scripted moment. they reported it all for our benefit. i'm up next, but now i'm singing the heartburn blues. hold on, prilosec isn't for fast relief. cue up alka-seltzer. it stops heartburn fast. ♪ oh what a relief it is!
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cue up alka-seltzer. it stops heartburn fast. dad: you excited for youyeah.st day? ♪ dad: you'll be fine, ok? girl: ok. dad: you look so pretty. ♪ i'm overprotective. that's why i got a subaru. love. it's what makes a subaru, a subaru. [heart beating]
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[heartbeat continues] [heartbeat, music playing louder] ♪ i'm feeling better since you know me... ♪ announcer: this song was created with heartbeats of children in need. find out how it can help frontline health workers bring hope to millions of children at everybeatmatters.org.
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so what happens when you put three actors from modern family together in an elevator? parental they get stuck. ju they were on the way to a fundraiser in kansas city when their elevator stopped between floors for nearly an hour. so what do they do? what many of us might do. they took to twitter to vent about it and put out this video. >> get us out. >> get us out. >> get us out. >> whole room. >> get us out. >> a dozen other people were stuck in the elevator with them making for some good fun. kansas city firemen eventually came to the rescue, as you can see, escorting julie bowen off there. later at the fundraiser stone street told the crowd, have a great night and don't use the elevator. to sports now, duke senior ryan kelly returned from injury and had one of the greatest games in team history. amazing.
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coach k called it a performance for the ages. joe carter joining me now in more from this morning's breacher report to tell us about it. >> good morning. you think of all the star players coach k has seen play through the year, for him to call ryan's performance one for the ages certainly says a lot about his game. coming into the game, no basketball for 13. no basketball for the last months because he's suffering from a really bad foot injury. the miami coach said he thought they were prepared for kelly's return, obviously they were not prepared for this ryan kelly. the senior at the fifth ranked team in the country, poured 36 points on them. duke proved to the rest of the country they are still a legitimate title threat. after the game, coach k praised kelly for doing it all. >> saying spectacular, whatever, doesn't do his performance justice. one for the ages. probably as good a performance
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as any player has had, duke player has had at cameron. >> wow, that says a lot. so after she record the the fastest time at daytona last week danica patrick, for lack of a better word, is struggling in phoenix. she qualified with one of the slowest times on the field, finished 40th out of 43 cars. i'm not negative nelly for danica. last year in this race she started 47th and finished 17th, which was her best cup finish of the soap. it's not all bad for danica, she still has a good shot today. instead of settling for overtime, baylor went for the win against kansas state. that back fired in the hands of a teammate, went out-of-bounds, no one touched it, no time off the clock. they would get the buzzer beater three-pointer win, hangs on 64-61. baylor is kicking themselves for not going to overtime. when the rankings comes out
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tomorrow gonzaga, the first time in history number one. some saying duke with the addition of ryan kelly is the best in the country. you can join the debate at bleacherreport.com. i'm going to use your method of picking brackets for march madness. that way. >> is that weird for kelly to come back and so-so well? normally i would think a player who has been disabled comes back and it kinds of takes a while to thaw out. >> you would think. you would think it's like coming back to a show after you've been off for a few days. shake off the cob web. he shook it off quick. >> joe carter, thanks for that. a long time state lawmaker in connect gets stripped of his leadership post. it's all something he said to a teenager girl. it was all too much for his colleagues. one phillips' colon health probiotic cap each day helps defend against these digestive issues with three strains of good bacteria. live the regular life.
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you are watching live pictures coming to us from florida. this is that house near tampa where on thursday night a sinkhole opened up in the bedroom of a florida man, jeff bush, and swallowed him alive. right now, as we understand it, we're trying to figure out exactly what's going on here. these are demolition crews -- that's what they are doing. they are taking the american flag out of the front yard. they are about to demolish this home. before they do so, out of respect, as they should, they took the american flag that had been posted in the front yard. after this we expect they are going to start taking the home apart. what you can't see, obviously, is the sinkhole. but we understand it's 50 feet deep, about 30 feet wide, and it's inside the home.
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we're wondering exactly as they do this what is going to happen. it's a very precarious situation. the authorities there are concerned that the sinkhole could grow. we do know sometimes sinkholes are widened by something like construction, by vibration. so obviously the act of demolishing the home could have some effect on that. folks who live near this in homes surrounding this bush family home have been evacuated. there's concern the sinkhole could go into neighboring properties. we're watching as the demolition crew there, as they do electric a safe distance, this is important to note, theriault way back. as you see from pictures, there are people gathering in the neighborhood to watch. you can see they are demolishing this back from the sidewalk because there are so many
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concerns. snchers were actually for erered to give up the search for jeff bush's body. obviously they wanted to recover the body for the family. they decided it was too dangerous. they may be risking the safety and lives of the folks they were hoping would be able to recover his body. families, as i mentioned, in the houses adjacent to these properties have left because this sinkhole could spread. we'll be monitoring these pictures as they get under way. this just started here in florida. again, as i mentioned this all started thursday night. jeff bush's brother said he had just gone in to tell his brother something. when he went into where he was
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in the house he heard this roar. he went into the bedroom where his brother was and it was just a sinkhole. that is a picture, i believe, of jeff bush's brother. not live. that's a taped picture. he come by previous days, obviously very distraught. he had obviously sunday night jumped into the sinkhole trying to rescue his brother. he was unable to do it. there's a picture of jeff bush. he was unable to do it. ultimately authorities made the decision to pull him from the hole. he tried to jump in with a shovel, just trying to get his brother. and ultimately they pulled him out of the sinkhole to safety. we will continue -- will we continue to monitor these pictures? we'll keep watching these. this is the demolition crew.
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this is selfner, florida, near tampa. there's a lot of sinkholes. while floridans are familiar with this happening, it's something very rare for this to happen in a home and to claim the life of someone. we are still waiting, obviously, to see what we can't see inside this home, which is the sinkhole. we understand it's 50 feet deep, about 30 feet wide. it could very likely grow. in previous days as crews were trying to locate jeff bush's body, they used in equipment to tether folks to the ground there in the front yard, so if they went in and they were searching for his body and the sinkhole were to widen, that they would be okay. they would be tethered to safety. obviously even now, that has been determined to be just too unsafe. no one is even allowed in the
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front yard where we saw crews operating yesterday. they pulled back operations to the street. people who are watching this happen, trying to get a glimpse of this, are pushed back farther to the opposite sidewalk. again, we are watching this demolition crew as they prepare to demolish this home, which has obviously been condemned. what we just saw a moment ago, what would be the corner of the house going into the entryway of the house, we saw what at first we couldn't figure out what they were doing. they kind of looked like they were scooping up a bit of earth, and it turned out they were scooping up an american flag that was sitting in the front yard of the house. so they went ahead and did that to make sure that out of respect that is something that did not go down with the home as it was demolished. you're watching as they are just getting started here. it looks like about to press in
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the roof. they are doing this gingerly as we've been watching here. there's a concern when you have a sinkhole. sometimes they are actually caused by the fact that water has dissolved limestone. that is why they are caused. it's water dissolving limestone. sometimes the event precipitating the sinkhole could be caused from nearby construction. that's been known to happen. this is something obviously they are doing very gingerly. they are, i imagine, going to be starting just a little bit by a little bit as they try to demolish this home. the sinkhole could get wider. one of the major concerns for the demolition crews is stabilizing the situation and trying to kind of get a handle on it and see ultimately where the sinkhole is going to stop growing. so this is happening again
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outside of tampa. this is in seffner, florida where jeff burba man there, was just going to bed. it's an incredibly freak accident. who do we have on the phone? josh gant, affiliate reporter with bay news 9. josh, where are you in. >> reporter: i'm actually about 25 or so yards from the home. demolition just started probably three minutes ago at this home here in receivener. last night we learned officials here had abandoned efforts of recovering the body of 36-year-old jeff bush saying the ground in the area was just too unstable to support a search here. heavy equipment was brought in
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late last night as i mentioned. what's going to happen is demolition crews will take off the left portion of the home, so the family members can -- they can actually bring that portion to the road so family members can collect whatever belongings they can. after that crews will use that excavator. officials are telling us at this point there's no hope of uncovering jeff bush's body because things are so unstable at this point. an hour to an hour and a half before demolition started, we did see a few family members walk up, kneel down and say a prayer for their loved one. as i membershipsed, demolition just getting under way three or
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four minutes ago in seffner. >> they feel, authorities feel it's structurally sound enough they could open up what i presume was the bedroom when this sinkhole opened up. they feel it's going to be structurally sound enough family members can go in and get some of their personal effects? >> what they are going to do is tear down a portion of the home and sort of drag that to the street. whatever belongings the family members can grab, they can grab. they are not letting -- >> all right. unfortunately we lost josh gant, our reporter there with cnn affiliate bay news 9, but we have a geologist on the phone, r randall orndorf that can give us a sense of when these crews are
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dealing with. i can only discern further demolition will only widen this sinkhole. is that right? >> that is correct. you can see they have got a crane that's as far away as possible from the hole. any kind of weight you're going to put on that surface is going to make it more unstable. >> how big do you think ultimately the sinkhole could be? >> hard to say, because we really can't see under ground very well. i know they had some geotechnical people doing geophysics earlier in the week to see if they could detect how large the hole would be underneath. we don't have the best methods to see under ground to really understand that. that's why all these precautions have to be taken. >> we don't have that. there is no technology or no sonar you can kind of use to test the ground and get a sense of where a potential sinkhole may be? >> is very difficult. there are some methods we're working with to see if we can do that.
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we've had various success with them. the material on top and the surface a lot of times will hinder what we can actually see underneath the ground. >> so ultimately, do you think it's just a precaution that the homes adjacent to this bush family property have been evacuated or do you think they may very well be at risk? >> i really don't know. again, the precaution is definitely needed. these holes tend to grow when they happen. we've seen in other parts of the country where houses have collapsed. luckily people have not been killed in those. where the inside of the house will collapse and then over a matter of days, that hole will continue to grow and swallow up more area around. >> what was your reaction when you heard about this probably friday morning? >> well, it's very tragic, obviously, was the worst thing. but you know, these sinkholes
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happen all over our country. almost every state has areas where this can happen. florida has the largest in the region. we don't hear about a lot of the sinkholes that occur because they are very localized. not widespread events like you see with hurricanes and earthquakes. so we have to -- you just don't see a lot of these in this situation. >> do you think it's safe at this point for the family members to go in and get some of their personal belongings? would you be concerned about their safety? is there a way to make sure they are safe, some tests can be done to make sure the ground is solid? >> i really don't think so. i think the environment agencies are doing the right thing. >> sorry. can you repeat that? >> i said i don't believe there really is. i think they are doing the right thing by being cautious. >> being cautious. okay. if you can stand by for me, randall, we're going to bring josh gant, our affiliate from
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bay news 9 back in. josh, you were saying the family members will be trying to get some of their personal effects, as we know they left on thursday night in shock and with nothing but the clothes on their back. tell us again how long this process is expected to take and what some of the precautions that the demolition crew is taking there. >> obviously they are keeping a lot of people back away from this home. at a news cancer a couple hours ago said they would only work a couple hours. they would bring some belongings out to the street so they could grab them. later on today and possibly into tomorrow, that's when they will demolish the rest of this home. as i mentioned, people there, keeping people back from this home because they are not too sure what actually is going to happen, once they start demolishing this home. i can tell you there are hundreds of people here who have
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gathered. they have their cell phones. they have their cameras. they are taking pictures because as officials told us over the past few days, this is an unprecedented event. >> those are just people who are they neighbors, people who have come for this? even though they are familiar with sinkholes, i imagine this is so bizarre and tragic, obviously, that this happened. >> yeah. we deal with sinkholes here in florida all the time. this situation is very tragic. the fact that people are telling us it took the man's life. he's actually still in there. as you were mentioning, people who have come into this community, residents and family members to witness, like i mentioned, this unprecedented event here in this suburb of tampa. >> all right, josh. thank you very much for that. stand by for us. we're going to be coming back to you as well as randall orndorff
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who we have on the line. we'll recap what's going on and check in with what's going on. this is seffner, the home where a sinkhole swallowed a man thursday night. authorities have been trying to recover his body. they ultimately decided it was too unsafe to do that and now they are demolishing the home. the homes around it have been evacuated out of concern this sinkhole will grow. this is a process that has just started and will be continuing to go on here straight ahead. we'll be right back to take a look at it. i've always had to keep my eye on her... but, i didn't always watch out for myself. with so much noise about health care... i tuned it all out. with unitedhealthcare, i get information that matters... my individual health profile. not random statistics. they even reward me for addressing my health risks. so i'm doing fine... but she's still going to give me a heart attack. we're more than 78,000 people looking out for more than 70 million americans.
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welcome back to cnn. i'm brianna keilar. you're watching live pictures from seffner, florida outside of tampa. this is the home of the man who was swallowed by a sinkhole on
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thursday night. in the preceding days, authorities there were trying to see if the situation was stable enough to try to recover his body. ultimately, though, they decided it would put other folks at risk of injury or potentially death trying to recover his body from that sinkhole inside this home, which is 50 feet deep, we understand, maybe 60 feet deep, and about 30 feet wide. you're watching the demolition which just began moments ago of this home and will continue for some time. there's i believe an excavator, don't quote me on that, but it is trying to very gingerly, as we have watched this, pull what we understand to be obviously some of the rubble of the home now but also, as we understand it from a reporter on the ground there, with our affiliate bay news 9, we'll go to him
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momentarily, but he was telling us the demolition crew was trying to pring out personal belongings of jeff bush, who passed away, so that his family can have things to remember him by. they had to leave the home thursday night with nothing but the clothes on his back. there was sort of an interesting moment at the beginning. the first moment of this demolition, if we can roll tape on this, was actually a flag taken from the front yard. it was hard to see what the excavator was doing. it seemed to be testing the ground but turned out that's not what it was doing. it was sort of pulling up with a little bit of earth an american flag sitting there in the front of the house. that fire and rescue team was able to recover it and fold it up so they have that. obviously so the family has that. you can see right now the demolition going on. this is pulling out what appears
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to be a dresser. may have been jeff bush's dresser or some piece of furniture in the home. let's get to josh gauntt with our affiliate from bay news 9. he's there watching from the ground on the street where authorities have people. josh, set the scene for us. tell us what's happening there and what folks there trying to catch a glimpse of this, what's the mood? >> reporter: the mood is very somber. item witnessed several people in tears while they are taking pictures of this event. as we mentioned, it's ununprecedented event in the area. demolition got under way shortly after 8:00 in this home. last night we learned officials here abandoned efforts of recovering the body of 36 years old jeff bush saying the ground is too unstable to support a search. heavy equipment, the excavator
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you're seeing there was brought in last night. what's going to happen, you're seeing they are taking apart a portion of the house. they are bringing personal items out to the street so family members can go through the belongings. after that, they are only going to work an hour or two today. after today, they will finish up the work. the sinkhole, as we mentioned, is about 30 feet wide and anywhere from 50 to 60 feet deep. the sinkhole has been growing since it started. as we mentioned, at this point no hope of recovering jeff bush's body because things are too unstable at this point. as you mentioned, brianna, this is a slow, methodical process with this excavator. they don't want to go into this house all at one time and the whole thing collapsed. they want to make sure it's done in a safe way. as mentioned, they are slowly bringing items to the street.
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as you mentioned a dresser there we saw so family members can collect what's left inside that home. brianna. >> they have pulled -- we've seen them pull a mattress out. we've seen them what appears to be pull speakers out. it is a normal home. that speaks to the fact on the night jeff bush was going about his normal routine, watching television when this happened. josh, it's such a heartrending story. we heard it told from jeremy bush, who obviously loved his brother very much. he jumped in without even thinking into this sinkhole trying to rescue his brother right after this happened. has the family said anything about the fact that his body can't be recovered? obviously, you know, having his remains and being able to bury jeff bush would have meant a whole lot to them. i know authorities would have wanted to do that for them.
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have they said how this affected them or not? >> reporter: obviously first couple of days they did have some questions. now i think they are slowly coming to the realization that they are not going to be able to bury their loved one. this unfortunately will be his final resting place. like you mentioned, just a very, very tragic story here. i mentioned family members fell to the ground, couldn't take what she was seeing here. just a very tragic situation here in this area. >> so were they there, josh? were they watching this or, no, they can't? >> a few members watching it. i did see a few turning away. there are a few watching this take place. a few looked to the ground in tears, just couldn't take it. >> do you know what they are hoping to recover? >> well, you know, i spoke to
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his brother over the last couple of days. their hopes were they could possibly recover the body so they could have some closure. we talk about closure in the news business. whether or not that is actually the case, whether it actually brings closure. to them, to have the body of their loved one, and to be able to bury them instead of going through this, that's what they want to do. as i mentioned, i think they are slowly coming to grips that's just not going to happen. >> well, we're hoping, obviously, for their sake, what has just been a tragedy. you can't even imagine. a completely freak accident. such a tragedy. you hope they will at least be able to recover something they can remember jeff by. obviously this family has been torn apart by what happened understandably. i want to bring in now randall
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orndorff. he's a geologist with the u.s. geological survey, to talk a little bit about the sinkhole in this house. first off, do you think, randall, that we'll be able to get a sense of what it looks like once this demolition is done? i know it's going to be a long process that will probably stretch into tomorrow sounds like. >> sounds like they have a good idea of how large the sinkhole is length and maybe depth wise. if they get better access to it, we'll be able to see more. also maybe understand its shape, give you a better understanding of if it grows in other directions, if it will grow toward those other houses. >> when you say understand its shape, would it be something besides a circle? >> well, depending. it's probably circular. could be oval. one direction could be longer than another